Jack Stack – Part 2

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Episode 9: Part 2 – Jack Stack & Bo Burlingham – A Walk Down Memory Lane with Two Legends

Jack Stack is Founder, President and CEO of SRC Holdings Corporation. Jack has been called the “smartest strategist in America” by Inc. Magazine and one of the “top 10 minds in small business” by Fortune Magazine. A pioneer of the leadership model known as open-book management, Stack is the author of two books on the subject, The Great Game of Business and A Stake in the Outcome. His expertise in using the open-book model has helped SRC Holdings Corporation start, acquire, and own over 60 businesses and created thousands of jobs since 1983. Along the way, SRC’s stock value has increased 360,000%.

Jack has served as a world judge for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards Institute and as an advisor for this group since 1998. Jack designed the first ever United Way Entrepreneurial Fund to encourage innovation within the non-profit community. He has also served as a contributor for Inc. Magazine and The New York Times and has addressed thousands of audiences on the topic of open-book management. Jack is the father of five children and grandfather of six.

Bo Burlingham is an editor-at-large of Inc. magazine and the author of five books, the most recent being Finish Big: How Great Entrepreneurs Exit Their Companies on Top (Portfolio/Penguin, 2014). A previous book, Small Giants: Companies That Choose To Be Great Instead of Big (Portfolio/Penguin, 2006), was one of five finalists for the 2006 Financial Times/Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year award.

Burlingham joined Inc. in January 1983 as a senior editor and became executive editor six months later. Bo has written two books with Jack Stack, the co-founder and CEO of SRC Holdings Corp. (formerly, Springfield Remanufacturing Corp.) and the pioneer of open-book management. One of the books, The Great Game of Business (Doubleday/Currency, 1992), introduced the concept of open-book management, has sold more than 300,000 copies, and was named one of “the 100 best business books of all time.” The other, A Stake in the Outcome (Doubleday/Currency, 2002), recounted how SRC built its culture of ownership while developing the business model that has allowed it to grow from $16 million to $600 million in revenue as of this writing.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • The origins of the first Inc. Magazine article, “The Turnaround” and how Jack reacted when the article came out.
  • How Jack and Bo met and how different their memories of their first meeting are.
  • Why employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) are growing in popularity.
  • What Bo does while Jack is fishing.
  • How SRC dealt with losing General Motors, their largest client.
  • How the idea of writing the book, “Great Game of Business” evolved.
  • Why Bo quit his job as the editor at Inc. Magazine.
  • Reactions to the Inc. Magazine article, “Being the Boss.”
  • Who called out the name “Great Game of Business?” It was once called something different.
  • The location where Jack and Bo conducted most of their interviews while writing “Great Game of Business.”
  • The reality of life as the concept of “Great Game of Business” got out of control with everyone wanting in on it – some people were famous!
  • Warren Buffet’s shocking statement to Jack while on stage at a ceremony.
  • The frustration Jack felt during the early stages of writing his book and why he felt that way.
  • How a SRC janitor took Jack under his wing.
  • Why the CEO of a $3.5 billion business is using Great Game of Business in his business.
  • How Jack feels about the economy now and in the near future.
  • Why Netflix used Great Game of Business.
  • The first Great Game of Business Conference and how it came about.
  • How Jack and Bo think they are impacting the world.
  • What’s wrong with Midwestern values?
  • Jack’s experiences meeting President George W. Bush while he was President.

Ways to contact Jack:

Ways to contact Bo:

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